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Are the rulers of Hindoostan just? Is the Company honoured ? Are the people happy? Happy! all slurred with the suspicion of native origin are, to a man, proscribed. No lustration can efface the stain-no sacrament absolve the sin! Oh for the tongues of those illustrious ornaments of the last century, who by the manly, fearless exercise of their transcendant talents, well-nigh sealed a charter of happiness for India-of Sheridan, by whose genius all who could warm in the vindication of innocence, or weep at a tale of distress, were excited and subdued—of Burke, by whose capa-' cious mind all the ends of the earth were compassed,' who expounded the duties of kings to subjects, forced the claims of subjects on their kings, and exposed the habitual, systematic, disregard in India, of the faith, by which the moral elements of the world are bound-of Fox, whose indefatigable energy sought no resting-place, knew no repose, while wrongs were unredressed or rights denied, who, strong in the denunciation of abstract injustice, was more than mortal in his patronage of persecuted weakness ; who, disdaining the distinctions of sect and creed, clime and colour, birth and station, embraced, with equal ardour and enthusiasm, the cause of freedom on the banks of Thames, of Niger, or of Ganges. The magic of their eloquence would have scattered the mists of distance and obscurity which hide India from our view. They would have introduced us to the dirge of the English Durbar, to learn from the fall of illustrious dynasties, and the mendicant destitution of the magnates and blood-royal of an emptied and embowelled land-the vanity of all earthly pride, the deplorable vicissitudes of human greatness, the awful insecurity of trust betrayed! They would have shown us the representatives of potent princes, the descendants of the Stuarts, the Tudors, and Plantagenets of India, bending with bated breath and whispering humbleness, craving protection, grateful for the smile of foreign satraps, whom their fathers would have esteemed too much honoured by being ranked with the dogs of their flocks. They would have told us to mark the unsubdued spirit, the dignified resignation of venerable age, the reluctant salem of the daring and the young. These are the grandsons of Rajahs and Nuwabs beggared by our extortions, or hugged by our kindness to death-the claimants of hereditary Jaghires and Zumeendarries in the North-the Percys and the Gordons of Bengal—or the lawless captains of predatory hordes—the fierce chieftains of the tribes of Mewar and Malwahthe unconquered Polygars of the South ; all cursing the credulity of their progenitors, impatient of subjection, burning for revenge. all longing, with the Prince of Hydrabad, for the time when every true believer shall grasp a handful of earth, to overwhelm and bury the infidels.
But is not this the just avengeance of humanity long tortured by the ancestors of these conquered lords? Though our yoke be burthensome to the proud, is it galling to the humble?
Oriental Herald, Vol. 22.
242 · The Asiatic Journal' on the East India and China Trade.
Have we no security in the terror of our arms, or the grateful acknowledgments of the people ? The troops that line the hall of audience, and the vestibule of the palace, are they not faithful and attached ?-Witness the mutiny at Ava, the tragedy at Barrackpore. -Enter the courts of judicature, are not the ministers of the temple pure ? Are the poor the victims of the law's delay ? Has wealth a monopoly of justice ?-On the bench are beardless boys ignorant of the language, without habits or sympathy with the Natives. Below, from the Amlah to the meanest minister of village vexation, all is bribery and peculation, and fraud and plunder. But the plains of India, on which nature's bounty is so profusely poured, do not they wave with luxuriant harvests? Has not cultivation been improved by English skill and ingenuity? Does not the independent aspect of a bold peasantry compensate for the pale, wan, sunken cheek of the famished artizan, who begs a mouthful of rice amid the ruins of desolated cities? Here, again, necessity, distress, and embarrassment are at war with the duty of the rulers. An engine of taxation, of unparalleled severity and extortion, supplies the insatiate cravings of their treasury; fleeced by the Curnums and the Tehsildars, by usurious Tucawee on compulsory advances, by the arbitrary violence of extents, nothing is left to the ryot but a bare sufficiency for the re-production of revenue. Crowds of the miserable population are seen to sally into the fields at night, to devour the green blades of corn or rice, as they shoot above the surface-to implore the privilege of working in chains upon the roads—to pick the undigested grains of food from the dung of elephants and of camels !* • In the early stages of the process by which this dreadful state of things was caused, every man of rank and landed fortune having been fast extinguished, the last cultivator who grows to the soil, after having his back scored by the farmer, was again flayed by the whip of his assignee, and thus by a ravenous, because a short-lived succession of claimants, lashed from oppressor to oppressor, t whilst a single drop of blood was left as the means of extorting a single grain of corn. Men of respectable condition, men equal to our substantial English yeomen, were daily tied up and scourged, to answer the multiplied demands of various contending and contradictory titles, all issuing from one and the same source. Tyrannous exactions brought on servile concealment, and that again called forth tyrannous coercion. They moved in a circle mutually producing and produced, till at length nothing of humanity was left in the Govern. ment, no trace of integrity, spirit, or manliness in the people, who dragged out a precarious and degraded existence, under this system of outrage upon human nature.' #
* Reflections on the State of India,' p. 132.
Gracious God! Are such enormities just subjects of eulogy, or do they cry for vengeance? If this be good government, how shall we designate misrule? It is written in the eternal constitution of man, enrolled in the decrees of the Almighty Providence, by whom kings rule, and princes hold their power, that nations will rebelagainst oppression. The history of ancient and modern times of Europe, Asia, and the Americas, all illustrate this sacred truth. The lasting fruit of just laws is cheerful obedience.' In India, if the consideration be honestly paid, we are sure of the reward, but if it be much longer delayed, calamities are assuredly in the womb of time, the like of which no eye hath seen, no heart conceived, and which no tongue can adequately tell.' It is the duty of the imperial Parliament, to provide against the gathering storm ; it is the duty of the people to urge on the attention of the Legislature, the alarming imminence of the danger; it is their interest too. No change can take place in the Government of India, in which the honour of the British Crown, and the security of this constitution are not in some degree involved. Our connexion with Asia, may yet prove a great blessing; it may continue a dreadful curse,-it may redound to our glory and prosperity,- it may be the means of our ruin and disgrace.
By Dr. M‘Kowan, of Morant Bay.
What power shall throw thy chains on me?
In camp, or court, with aught like thee?
Pass all unwished before mine eyes;
But wake my thoughts, but wake my sighs.
"Tis but to dream of hills more dear :-
'Tis but to weep for streams as clear!
Which drag me hence with pleasing pain:
But dead affections once again.
What boots thy gold when bought so dear?
Thy wond'rous scenes of flood and fall? When pale disease is gliding near,
Isle of the West! what boot they all ? Thy maddening sun now sears the brow
That once my dear lov'd hearth-fire warmed — Thy wild wood cries are echoing now,
Those ears once woman's music charmed.
Oh! I have lost for thee, sad Isle !
The sweetest dream that e'er youth dreamed : Have lost for thee the purest smile,
That e'er o'er widowed heart hath beamed ! And now with breaking hopes and heart,
I gaze along thy western wave; Where ends thy glorious sun his part,
And seeks, like me, his distant grave !
But not like me, he lives again
Another day of life and light; While dreams, and joys, and hopes,-how vain !
Are hasting with my youth to-night. So perish all the dreams of youth ;
High visions of the good and brave ! All glorious schemes of spotless truth,
Now quench'd beyond that western waye !
And, what awaits me now, sad Isle !
The boon thou giv'st to all thy sons ; An early grave ;-and lo! the while,
To thee some brother insect runs ! One greener spot, within some pale
Which circles all that once was gay ; Will rise to tell the little tale
Of him, the dead of yesterday.
Voyage on the NILE, FROM CAIRO TO THE CATARACIS.
(From that portion of Mr. Buckingham's Unpublished Manuscripts, from which the materials
of his Lectures on Egypt are drawn.)
Caravan of Slaves from the Interior of Africa— Ancient Egyptian Tombs and Temples-Worship of the Serpent and the Bull.
Siout, November 9. DiseMBARKING from our boat at sun-rise, we procured asses and rede towards the town of Siout. The Turkish cavalry were already assembling for their military exercise of the jerid, and as we occasionally met some of the horsemen on the road, they did not fail to evince all that contempt for us, with which the plainness and poverty of a Frank dress was calculated to inspire them, when contrasted with their own gay and flowing habiliments; their splendid arms and the rich caparisons of their prancing steeds.
On entering the town, which is built at about a mile from the western bank of the Nile, and is there secured from the overflow of the inundation, we perceived the close approach of the Lybian chain of mountains to its skirts. This produces a picturesque effect, while the perforation of the cliffs with ancient tombs and caverns makes that effect impressive. The lofty summit of the rocky mass was now buried in the humid clouds of the morning, and seemed to wear a frown upon its brow, as sullen as the darkness of its excavated chambers.
Learning that the young Ibrahim Pacha was absent on a visit to Keneh, we waited on his physician, Signor Maruchi, of Turin, who received us in the kindest and most polite manner, and from whose gentlemanly affability I already began to hope for much pleasure during the short stay we proposed to make here. Our morning was very fully occupied in receiving the visits of the Christian inhabitants, exchanging the common offices of civility, and answering the thousand questions which were pressed upon us, relative to the political state of affairs in Europe ; when after a noon-meal, horses were saddled, on which we rode out to observe the town.
As the capital of Upper Egypt, and the residence of its governor, the second son of the Viceroy, it is the principal military and commercial station of the Saïd ; so that although in its streets, bazars, and dwelings, it is not superior to Melouai, nor in its appearance from without at all equal to Manfalout, yet in wealth and population it exceeds them both. We traversed it in every direction, without finding any one object worthy of particular attention, and were about to return to the house; when learning that a large caravan had lately arrived from Darfour, and was now encamped in the desert on the borders of the town, we prevailed on Signor